Sport

Thursday 14 December 2017

Elliott hits treble top

Definite Ruby (right) comes to win her race under Barry Geraghty
Definite Ruby (right) comes to win her race under Barry Geraghty

Gordon Elliott landed a treble at Downpatrick including the victory of Definite Ruby in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Beginners Chase.

The mare came into the race on the back of a splendid run in Grade Three company at Galway, where she finished second to the useful Alelchi Inois, and as a result she was sent off the 8-11 favourite.

It didn't look good for her supporters as she never seemed to be travelling sweetly, but she picked up the leaders well enough and got the better of a battle with Draycott Place in the end to win by four and a half lengths.

Elliott said: "It's a lucky spot for us. She deserved it. Barry said the track didn't suit her great, but wasn't going to be beaten. I might try and bring her to England for a novice. She has her black type. She'll probably be covered soon. I hadn't a winner in 10 days and I was in bad form and then I have five in the last two days."

The treble was initiated by Geraghty on Knight's Parade in the At The Races Maiden Hurdle, in which the 6-5 favourite was going strongly approaching the final flight when leader Myblueeyedgirl came down, easing the way.

Once he cleared the obstacle Knight's Parade quickly skipped clear and beat Ram Them All by a comfortable eight lengths.

Kevin Sexton gave High Net Worth (6-1) a confident ride in the Cheering Rory Handicap Hurdle, delivering a smooth challenge after jumping the last in fourth place and sweeping past to beat The Two Jays by a length and a quarter.

Elliott said: "He's a monkey. Kevin gave him a class ride - he's a very good rider and I'm going to use him a lot this winter. I told him to ride him with balls and he did. It's an important winner as it's my 50th over jumps this season between the UK and Ireland, and it's my quickest 50."

Colin McBratney's 9-1 chance Obispo was always prominent in the Ryder Support Beginners Chase and had the measure of long-time leader Dun Scaith when that one fell at the final obstacle, clearing away subsequently to beat Doc Hollywood by 10 lengths in the hands of Adrian Heskin.

Hot favourite Better Back Bob attempted to make all in the Horse First Supplements Maiden Hurdle and was agonisingly caught in the dying strides by Jack Doyle on his father Pat's unexposed five-year-old High Counsel (16-1), who won by a head.

The jockey said: "I think that's my 200th track winner. He travelled very well and coming to the last I knew the one in front was tying up. Dad said he had improved since the last day.

"I'll go back to England for the winter and then see about the visa to go back to America next summer. I had a couple of winners in America this summer and I've ridden a Grade One winner out there. Hopefully I'll get out there again. It's pretty much English and Irish lads riding out there so it's a home from home."

Lily Of Killarney's chance looked to have gone when she lost the lead two out in the Honouring Oliver Handicap Chase, but Colin Bowe's 8-1 shot fought back on the run-in under Mark Walsh and finished three and a half lengths in front.

The jockey said: "She gives everything and once I got over the last I gave her a smack and she took off. Colin put the blinkers on her to help her concentrate and it worked great. She's small and nimble and wings round the bends."

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